Having the right tool for the job is critical. In my home office, you’ll find a large variety of pens, so that I’ll have the perfect color and substance of ink to write what needs to be said. I’ll often change color ink to demonstrate the different times I’ve worked on something, so that they are easy to distinguish. A straight screwdriver might not do the trick if the screw you’re working on is a Phillips. Some things don’t matter so much, but in other things, I might need to have several similar-but-not-identical items on hand to choose from, just so that I can always have the one that’s just right.
There are plenty of times when I need the right tool for the job. Would our lives be different if we realized that the coping tools we’ve used all our lives aren’t very good, and other ones are out there? There are a lot of ways to handle our lives and our worlds. We are not trapped by the paradigm of our parents, grandparents, or friends. We aren’t limited to seeing the world through their eyes. We have our own eyes and can learn new things. We can find the joy and happiness that may have escaped others we know. Where others may aggressively elbow aside someone who may cut in line, maybe you choose to shrug, smile, and let them in. Maybe their need is urgent and yours isn’t. Maybe they’re just being a jerk, but that isn’t a mandate that you be one, too. It’s such a little thing. Maybe you’re able to stand in you power where it counts, so you don’t need to assert yourself in the places that don’t.
So, I’ve been developing new tools, so that I have just the one I need. I’m working on non-judgment, fearlessness, risk-taking, releasing old patterns of behavior, resilience, and just plain love. There are times when one of these is the right tool for the job. What’s my big gun—the one that seems to work the best and most often? It’s a toss-up between non-judgment and forgiveness – of myself and others. Simple? Yes. Easy? No.
There are a lot of spiritual tools out there. Which one is best for a particular situation? Sometimes it isn’t obvious, but that quiet, still voice inside knows. Just ask. We’re all so ready to question authority, but reluctant to question ourselves. Maybe it’s time to change that too.